Enter the I <3 Conference Series, something that originated with an idea between a couple friends of mine that has grown quite a bit. A long story made short, a friend I knew in high school who founded a club here at my college has created several branches of sorts and expanded the "club" into something more than a club. It's become a kind of nonprofit with locations in various states depending on where networks and contacts live. One activity of many is the conference series that attempts to promote knowledge and begin a dialogue in the hopes of giving people somewhere to go and creating something to help shape their experiences in the future.
It sounds ambiguous, but this time I can't help you more than that. While the last two conferences encouraged knowledge and discussing issues in Africa and then the Middle East, this time, the topic of the conference is empowerment - which is one of those things that sounds so simple, but gets so complex as you begin to talk about it.
This is the weekend I have ahead of me. Tonight, the first of three days, was all about opening speakers who gave us stories of motivation and insight that really did more to promote thought than anything else - thought about how people try to make a big difference rather than acknowledging that people all around them need someone to look up to as well; how nurturing others can begin a domino effect and bring about the biggest changes of all; and how sometimes, all we can do is encourage others until they have the strength to empower themselves.
I'm interested to see what else this weekend brings.